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American Red Cross and Partners Assist Elderly Evacuees

Many have anxiety over the situation and are worried, especially those who have dementia.

The American Red Cross in partnership with local agencies are providing assistance to more than fifty senior citizens following an emergency evacuation Monday evening. Residents of the Alpha Towers apartment complex were evacuated due to a sprinkler system malfunction. An emergency shelter was opened for the residents of 165 units at UAW Local 12 on Ashland Avenue in Toledo.

Red Cross staff and volunteers are working around the clock to provide compassionate care to those affected. Residents received breakfast early this morning, lunch this afternoon, and other items including comfort kits containing personal care items.

“It’s because of our hardworking volunteers and staff along with the empathetic and passionate partners we have in the Area Office on Aging and the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department that we can provide hope for these residents,” said Kenneth Robinson, regional disaster program officer.

Nurses and social workers from the Area Office on Aging of Northwest Ohio are on scene alongside the Red Cross interviewing and assisting clients. More than 30 of the residents at the shelter participate in Ohio's PASSPORT Medicaid program and are in need of specialized and personalized medical care.

Gloria Smith, a Public Care Nurse from the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department, is providing medication and mental health support. “Many have anxiety over the situation and are worried, especially those who have dementia,” said Smith, “We’re here going over their medication, quieting their fears, and reorienting them.”

The shelter will remain open until other housing arrangements have been made for those affected by the evacuation. The Red Cross will continue working with the residents to assess and meet their immediate needs. In the days ahead, Red Cross workers and local partners will support those who need some extra help to make individual recovery plans and connect them to other services to support additional needs.

All Red Cross disaster relief is provided free of charge, thanks to the generosity of the American people. To support the Red Cross and disasters like this one, people can visit, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or contact the local chapter located at 3100 West Central in Toledo.